Thread Rating:

MrPapagiorgio
MrPapagiorgio
Joined: Nov 11, 2009
  • Threads: 58
  • Posts: 183
January 11th, 2010 at 12:44:44 AM permalink
Hey All,

I'm going to be travelling to Canada within the next two weeks, and would like to do some gaming while I am there. Does anyone know about the casinos there, and what to expect in respect to maximum odds, bj house edges, availabiity of pai gow poker, etc? Any information on this topic would be of assistnce. Thanks.
So I says to him, I said "Get your own monkey!"
Wizard
Administrator
Wizard 
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
  • Threads: 1419
  • Posts: 24215
January 11th, 2010 at 2:57:43 AM permalink
The short answer is I think you can find all the standard games with rules and limits similar to mid-level Vegas casinos. I know that is the case of the casinos in Montreal and Niagara Falls. The casino in Chinatown in Vancouver is rather small, and I think just baccarat and blackjack. The casino in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, looked like just video slots and bingo.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
MrPapagiorgio
MrPapagiorgio
Joined: Nov 11, 2009
  • Threads: 58
  • Posts: 183
January 11th, 2010 at 3:20:00 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

The short answer is I think you can find all the standard games with rules and limits similar to mid-level Vegas casinos. I know that is the case of the casinos in Montreal and Niagara Falls. The casino in Chinatown in Vancouver is rather small, and I think just baccarat and blackjack. The casino in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, looked like just video slots and bingo.



Maybe I'll post a little write up for the site after my visit. I'm sure it wouldn't hurt having some fresh info on our northern neighbors.
So I says to him, I said "Get your own monkey!"
Wizard
Administrator
Wizard 
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
  • Threads: 1419
  • Posts: 24215
January 11th, 2010 at 3:40:17 AM permalink
I would like that!
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
MrPapagiorgio
MrPapagiorgio
Joined: Nov 11, 2009
  • Threads: 58
  • Posts: 183
January 11th, 2010 at 5:25:32 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I would like that!



It's undecided if I'll actually stay in their hotels or eat at their buffets (though I may take a walk through the buffets just to check them out), but other than this, is there any info you would like included that I didn't list in my Aria mini-write-up?

http://wizardofvegas.com/forum/off-topic/off-topic/571-aria-opening-
So I says to him, I said "Get your own monkey!"
cardshark
cardshark
Joined: Nov 30, 2009
  • Threads: 9
  • Posts: 239
January 11th, 2010 at 6:28:25 AM permalink
Canadian guy here...I've been to every single casino in Ontario and Quebec and in general, they are not nearly as good as what you can find in Vegas. All casinos are government owned and most are government operated as well (exceptions would be Rama and Caesars Windsor).

Blackjack rules suck (H17 Quebec + Windsor, 8 decks on the floor, auto shufflers in Niagara). Spanish is better, only in Ontario, Switch is good, also only Ontario. No info on slots payback, though Ontario law states min. 85%. Pai Gow is available in Ontario only - tiles in Niagara, dealer wins ties, the usual. Terrible comps (Windsor is part of Total Rewards), crowded conditions in most casinos (Montreal, Niagara, Rama, Hull). Table minimums vary, to as low as $5 in Windsor on weekday mornings to $25/$50 in Montreal on weekends. Single-zero roulette on the floor in Montreal. Bad keno. Bad video poker (Windsor used to have 99.95% pick'em, but they removed all of the generous pay table games recently.) I hear Thousand Islands and Fort Erie (no tables) still have the 99.95% pick'em, but I've never seen the machines.

Alcohol is not free (though non-alcoholic drinks are). Best shows are at Rama, Montreal if you like cabaret-style. Food varies from terrible (Great Blue Heron) to excellent (Le Baccara in Hull).

Anyway, that's a start, obviously more info on the net is available (vpfree, individual casino sites, bj21, etc.)
teddys
teddys
Joined: Nov 14, 2009
  • Threads: 150
  • Posts: 5514
January 11th, 2010 at 11:02:47 AM permalink
Cardshark, you forgot to mention the best thing about Ontario casinos -- no smoking, anywhere!

I agree with everything else you said. Spanish 21 is a pretty good game in Ontario. All the video poker is pretty much worthless in Eastern Canada. Pai Gow is $15 usually in Windsor, $10 at slow times, with a crummy side bet. There are very high maximum limits for some reason. Craps is 5x at Windsor, with sometimes $5 minimums (never seen $5 on BJ there). Niagara has big baccarat with a $15,000 max that I mentioned in another thread. I saw people betting the max there last time. Agreed that the comps at Windsor suck but they have pretty good promotions. Better than average hotel in Windsor and a fairly easy room comp. In fact, I have a weekday comp you can use if there is some way to get in touch with me and you are in fact visiting there. I'd be interested to see what you find out.
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
boymimbo
boymimbo
Joined: Nov 12, 2009
  • Threads: 17
  • Posts: 5994
January 11th, 2010 at 11:33:20 AM permalink
Quote: MrPapagiorgio

Hey All,

I'm going to be traveling to Canada within the next two weeks, and would like to do some gaming while I am there. Does anyone know about the casinos there, and what to expect in respect to maximum odds, bj house edges, availability of pai gow poker, etc? Any information on this topic would be of assistance. Thanks.



For all you Americans, Canada is a big country - actually bigger than the United States. It would actually help to tell us WHICH cities in Canada you're going to. It's like me saying that I'm traveling to the United States and need a hotel recommendation.

That said, Canada has various casinos sprinkled throughout the country, all with different flavours and feels.

Ontario (where I live) has 6 charity Casinos and 4 regular casinos (olg.ca). Profits for the "Charity casinos" go entirely to the government. Charity Casinos have about 20-30 table games and 400 - 600 slots. Regular casino's (they have up to about 100 table games and 2 - 3 thousand slots) profits go to the province as well after a licensing fee. All craps tables I have seen have 3-4-5 odds with 5-15 minimums depending on time of day/day of week. Blackjack games are similar to what you can see in Vegas, with minimums from $5 (very rare) to $25. CSMs and hand-dealt shoes are typical. Some games feature staying on 17. Surrender is sometimes allowed. Doubling on any two cards is allowed, as is splitting to four hands. Splitting Aces yield one card only. I don't see double deck or single deck play at these lower limits. Pai Gow poker is available at a couple of the charity and most of the regular casinos with limits from $10 to $50. The big casinos are very similar to Vegas. Slots paybacks are similar to Vegas. Video Poker is stingy. Switch and Spanish are available at most casinos. The large casinos boast adjoining hotels, shows, etc. If you are going to Toronto, it is at least a 90 minute drive to any casino.

British Columbia has a number of smaller casinos sprinkled throughout the province with most of them in Vancouver. They also offer table games similar to the play in Ontario. (bclc.com).

Montreal and Ottawa (Hull) have casinos, also fairly nice Vegas style venues with Vegas style games. Halifax also has a casino. Alberta has several small casinos mostly centred around the urban centres (The West Edmonton Mall, North America's largest mall, also boasts a casino). All offer table games but craps is spotty.

So if you want more specific information, please tell us where in Canada you are going and I am sure the Canadians in this forum will be happy to help!
----- You want the truth! You can't handle the truth!
cardshark
cardshark
Joined: Nov 30, 2009
  • Threads: 9
  • Posts: 239
January 11th, 2010 at 11:37:51 AM permalink
Quote: teddys

Cardshark, you forgot to mention the best thing about Ontario casinos -- no smoking, anywhere!

I agree with everything else you said. Spanish 21 is a pretty good game in Ontario. All the video poker is pretty much worthless in Eastern Canada. Pai Gow is $15 usually in Windsor, $10 at slow times, with a crummy side bet. There are very high maximum limits for some reason. Craps is 5x at Windsor, with sometimes $5 minimums (never seen $5 on BJ there). Niagara has big baccarat with a $15,000 max that I mentioned in another thread. I saw people betting the max there last time. Agreed that the comps at Windsor suck but they have pretty good promotions. Better than average hotel in Windsor and a fairly easy room comp. In fact, I have a weekday comp you can use if there is some way to get in touch with me and you are in fact visiting there. I'd be interested to see what you find out.



I left a lot out in my post (I didn't want it to turn into a multi page post nobody will want to read), but I definitely should have mentioned the smoking ban - which also applies to Quebec casinos. A very much appreciated law!
pocketaces
pocketaces
Joined: Nov 11, 2009
  • Threads: 3
  • Posts: 158
Thanks for this post from:
judiking88
January 11th, 2010 at 2:32:46 PM permalink
I'm very familiar with Ontario Casinos as well. In general, they follow atlantic city rules almost exactly. ALL blackjack tables in Ontario are S17 DAS 6 or 8-deckers. Windsor adds re-split of aces. Other than that there are no poor variations like H17 or 6:5 games.

At the big casinos, CSMs are common on the low-limit games, but never on the high limit ones. The smaller 'locals' casinos like Brantford removed all their CSMs after too many complaints and are all shoe gammes.

Craps is becoming 5x odds at many places, and 10x at others, so that is nice to see.

Roulette is double-zero with single-zero in the high limit rooms of fallsview casino ($100 min) and possibly casino rama (north of Toronto).

Penetration varies greatly by dealer. Sometimes terrible at around 60 percent, and other times decent at 75 or 80 percent. It is a bit more controlled in the high limit rooms.

Speaking specifically of the large resort-style casinos in Niagara falls (Fallsview Casino and Casino Niagara) and cottage country north of Toronto (Casino Rama), tables are usually $10-$15 minimums with $5 on craps and some of the carnival games. Saturday nights will see $25 and up on all blackjack tables except perhaps one. Limits are generally $500 or $1000 on the main floor with far higher in the high-limit areas. The local casinos almost always deal $5 blackjack and the highest upper limits you will see on any table is usually $500.

The only other blackjack game that offers differing rules is the electronic blackjack at casino niagara. They apparently installed this so they could offer $5 blackjack all the time. It is a S17 game with late surrender, no hole card, and split pairs only once. Since it has a card reader like a slot machine, you can factor the cash back rate directly in to the house edge. In this case, it is 0.35 percent which is slighlty better than the 'live' game (0.41 percent). It is dealt from a six-deck shoe with 2/3 penetration. Counting is impossible because they do not inform you when the shuffle takes place. The house edge drops to a low 0.2 percent on this game during double point days.

Casino niagara and rama have decent poker rooms with standard rake, fallsview uses a session fee that is generally burdensome on low-limit games but okay on the higher limit ones as long as the game moves quickly.

VP is usually poor. Full-pay is rare and may be only found at some of the slot parlors.

Comps are below average compared to a good strip property, but promotions can be good. I get many mailers as well.

I've also been to the Montreal Casino. Very interesting building and layout. Blackjack rules are poorer than Ontario with some H17 games. S17 games are found but at a bit higher limits.

Never been to the casinos in Western Canada.

Oh, ignore the so-called 'sportsbook' at casino niagara. To skirt regulations, you must parlay at least two bets and the lines are poor. When I was there last I heard they were lobbying to get the law changed so it could operate normally, but like usual the major sports leagues bite the hand that feeds and are leading the charge to block this change.

  • Jump to: